Thursday, December 4, 2008

Bright Yuletime Light

Last night we were supposed to have a play date at our house with our "park friends" Holly and her son Andre. She called and suggested that instead we look at a well known holiday display not far from our house. The temperature was crisp but not frigid and it would be a good time to walk around outside. Anytime for my kids to walk outside in the dark is usually hugely fun so I was immediately on board. And this was a great night. The displays are all hand carved by a local resident from styrofoam and carefully and lovingly painted. It is his gift to the community and the season and he has done this for more years than I can remember. There is a guest book in his yard and all the visitors sign it. Amazingly, he came out of his house to chat with us. He is 98 years old now but still spry and alert and together. His joy in the season and in children is still so very evident. When he was younger (though still a senior citizen) I remember that he visited my eldest son's class in public school and taught the children how to shape the styrofoam with a plastic knife. Last night he told us of how he was born high up in Canada 98 years ago and gave each of our children a sweet little carved styrofoam mouse. I don't know if next year he will still be here, 98 years old is amazing in and of itself--those mice will be family treasures reminding us in years to come of a funfilled night with friends and the gift of the holiday decorations made by a very special man.

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